The Jazz seemed ready to play two teams, with a roster of nine players in blue. The Mavericks were ready to clash, from the teal of their uniforms to the tenacity of their players. Will Goldstein rebounded the first Jazz shot, passing to teammate Tyler Rohan for the first basket of the game. Chase Sutton played good defense for the Jazz, but Rohan was up again. The Mavs relished the 4-0 lead for a while, until Deejai Rangkrul’s foul shot went in. Will Goldstein added another basket for the Mavs, and Rohan sent one in from three-point range, ending the first quarter 8-1 in a Manhattan Youth Basketball League game last week between fourth and fifth grade teams.
It’s been a long time since the Mavs were in the lead, and Alex Nimura and Jim Huynh played great defense to hold the Jazz back. Some players just couldn’t be stopped, though, including Brody Sharoff with the first of eight baskets. Teammate William Eng made field goal attempts, but was shut down by Tyler Adams and Aidan Ostermaier on a tight Maverick defense, and Trevor Goldstein made his first of three free-throws. But with the shooting power of Sharoff and teammate Niall Gallagher (four baskets), the Jazz inched closer until the Mavs were up 15 - 11 at the half.
Will passed to brother Trevor Goldstein in harmony, scoring his first of three baskets. Rohan set a pick and Will Goldstein scored, and despite Eng and Rick Mortensen defending the Jazz basket, Ostermaier answered with a mirror-image play. Devon Minnihan showed good hustle for the Jazz. Jacob Roter energized the Jazz with a stop-and-start play that ended in a sweet layup for his first of three baskets. Rohan answered with a quick pass to Trevor Goldstein to add to the Maverick lead. Roter’s great half-court pass to teammate Gallagher resulted in another fine layup, but at the end of the third the Mavs still held the lead, 27-19.
In the final quarter, the Jazz controlled all the action. Sharoff’s behind-the-back dribbling and accurate shots resulted in more points for the Jazz. Ostermaier stole the ball and passed to Rohan, whose shot went in and then out. Rangkrul’s great follow up shot tied the game for the first time. Rohan’s fourth basket moved the Mavs ahead by two, but Sharoff was under the basket for another layup and tied it again. Minnihan’s second basket put the Jazz in the lead for the first time all night.
The Mavs’ subs were hardly rested, but coach Ken Mortensen was able to choose from a bevy of players. Rohan set another pick for Will Goldstein, who scored but Sharoff answered with another fine shot. Eli Isikoff got into the action with his first basket of the game from the side. Adams, still looking peaked, brought the ball towards the Maverick basket with a fab layup that rolled around the rim twice before popping out. The Jazz grabbed the rebound, and heeded their coach’s plea to “Give it to Brody!” Sharoff’s allyoop missed but teammate Mortensen was ready for the rebound and his first basket.
The Mavs desperately tried to gain their well-earned lead, but the Jazz turned it over again, and Sutton joined the fun with his first basket. The Mavs’ Will Goldstein laid another one up, leading the evening with nine baskets, but the Mavs were behind 41-35 with eight seconds left. It was a heartbreaking loss for the Mavericks.